PKI certificates gain following by DOD vendors

Two years ago, the Defense Department got a tepid response when it invited contractors to use its public-key infrastructure.

Now, however, 'more and more DOD partners are using the service' to sign documents and secure their e-mail to program managers, said Rob Carey, e-business leader for the Navy.

DOD's Interim External Certificate Authority program has three certificate issuers: Digital Signature Trust Co. of Salt Lake City, Operational Research Consultants Inc. of Chesapeake, Va., and VeriSign Inc. of Mountain View, Calif.

In December 2001, DOD had only a few hundred digital certificates. VeriSign now has issued about 20,000 certificates, but in the last two months the number has risen by more than 50 percent.

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